Self Treating an Ear Ache in ME!

Updated on February 17, 2012
T.L. asks from Cuba, MO
11 answers

My ear started hurting about a week ago and I didn't think much about it until yesterday morning. Then OUCH! My left ear and jaw hurt. It does not hurt to bite, just to open my mouth. When my mouth opens the hinge where my top and bottom jaw hurt, BUT when I bite down my ear hurts. I had fever last night so I know something is infected. There is one catch this is also the side of my mouth that I need a crown and have been nursing since last July. :( The dentist prescribed me some pencillin (sp?) back then that I started taking yesterday morning. It still hurts today even after taking the pencillin and the ear drops (I bought at the store over the counter) for ear aches.

Should I just give up and make a doc apt tomorrow? I hope it gets better, but when I put the ear drops in a bit ago it hurt to have them in.

I took off work all weekend for some major retail therapy and really don't wanna be sick for it!

What would you do? It will cost me $80 out of pocket to just see the doc.

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So What Happened?

I never took any of the script until yesterday so I have a full dosage. I am taking 4 pills a day at 500 mg each pill.

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answers from Cumberland on

Go to the Dr-and don't take old antibiotics-and always finish an antibiotic when one is prescribed! Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Washington DC on

Ouch... I just got over a similar ear ache that had me miserable for about three weeks.

Try taking a decongestant (the real stuff you have to get from behind the counter) for a few days in a row. I know you think it's actually IN your ear, but all that stuff can be so close together sinus pressure is usually the culprit for ear, jaw and tooth pain for me. Also try a saline nasal rinse for a few days to get stuff moving (Again, it won't feel like your nose is the issue, but it helps).

FYI Antibiotics really need to be taken in an entire round. You shouldn't have any left from July, but since you obviously do DON'T TAKE THEM. You don't have enough for a whole treatment and taking less than a full course can make the problem worse by making the infection resistant to the penicillin. Also, most ear infections can be cleared without antibiotics.

Hope this helps.


2 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I have an ear infection right now. My ear drum ruptured and I had blood & fluid coming out of my ear for a couple days. (I didn't wait to go the doc -- I have a history of ear infections that don't hurt until they are very bad.) My point is, don't wait to go to the doc and be sure to tell him you already started taking antibiotics, otherwise, it could appear that you don't have an infection and he might give you misinformed advice. Regarding the meds you started taking -- there are lots of different types of antibiotics and you may need a different kind for your ear that what was prescribed for your tooth. They usually prescribe Amoxocillin or Amox-Clav for me.

Sounds like the $80 would be better spent on your health than on this weekend's retail therapy.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Please don't self-treat with old medication that was prescribed for something else. This could be an ear infection and if the pain is spreading as you describe it could be worsening; is it worth losing some of your hearing just to avoid a co-payment? You need to see a doctor and get diagnosed today so you can start the appropriate medications immediately. Paying $80 out of pocket to see the doctor is worth not having the infection worsen; if it spreads, you will pay far, far more in co-pays when you end up at an emergency room or getting much stronger medications.

If you are sick, stay home from your "retail therapy." Shops will still be there when you feel better.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Memphis on

If it is an infection then you need to see a doctor to get the correct amount of antibiotic prescribed. Over-the-counter medications are for symptom relief.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Madison on

are you taking a full 8-10 day dose of Penicillin? if not they you should go in and get it checked out so you can have a full dose. if it is a full dose you just need to give it a few days to start feeling better. The antibiotics don't work immediately. heat helps with the pain, along with the drops and ibuprophen

edit...are you taking stuff from back in july! need to go in and get it diagnosed. I thought you just started the meds for a tooth crown you are getting in a few days. I read that wrong. Go in!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Topeka on

GO TO THE DOCTOR! How much out of pocket were you planning to spend on "retail therapy"?

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Omaha on

Personally, when my kids were little and had ear infections, I used garlic oil in their ears. Garlic has a natural antibiotic and a few days of warm garlic oil and no antibiotics.

This method may not be for everyone but I simply didn't want my kids to suffer through ear infections or the pain. You do smell a bit like a salad but I liked the natural remedy. Any health food store will have these and nowdays, the garlic oil has much if not all of the smell removed.

Good luck!



answers from Seattle on

Go to the doctor.. You will feel so much better.. Maybe tell the actual doctor you are worried about 80 dollars does he offer a discount.. I said this to a doctor when I was just out of college.. The doctor looked at me and said glad I could help..and this visit is free. Or if it is still 80 dollars may u make payments.
Get better



answers from Kansas City on

You didn't say why the dentist prescribed the Penicillin in July, but obviously an antibiotic is for an infection. If you had an infection that long ago and it went untreated, maybe you are getting an abcess in that tooth that needs the crown. If a jaw tooth, the pain could travel into ear.

Self treating with antibiotics is a huge problem in this country and why so many of them don't work anymore, because they weren't used as directed in the first place. If they were prescribed in July, perhaps you are not even dealing with an infection. Fevers are not the "end all" to make one think everything is infected just because a fever comes about. Of course, if it is like 100.5 or above for 24 hours or more, may need treatment. If one is on some type of cancer treatment, getting chemo or radiation, temp at 100.5 is very significant, but otherwise many drs. won't treat for a one time spike, as you described, "had fever last night". How high was it and how long did it last?

Another thought is if it is in the "hinge" of your jaw, have you considered TMJ (temporal mandibular joint) disorder? This can cause the ear pain, swelling and affects opening or closing the mouth.
IF TMJ, may need to be adjusted by Dr., Dentist or Chiropractor. When that is done, it can be almost instant relief. May need further testing to diagnose. It can become a chronic problem.



answers from Anchorage on

Take an ear dropper and have someone assist you - put hydrogen peroxide in your ear (we fill it up to the top, could be 6-10 drops) and let it stay there until all the fizzing has stopped then flip over and do the other ear.....this works all the time, especially if you catch it early on. My kids and I always use this method, you can even see videos on youtube about it. Kills all infection.

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